WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump suggested Friday that he may declare a national emergency over the situation at the southern border after next week’s State of the Union address.
“You’ll hear the State of the Union and then you’ll see what happens right after the State of the Union,” Trump told reporters Friday when asked if he expected to move forward with an emergency declaration.
Trump is scheduled to deliver his address Tuesday night from the chamber of the House of Representatives.
In recent weeks, Trump has openly flirted with declaring an emergency — a controversial move that he claims will allow the administration to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border without Congressional approval.
While the move is bound to face a myriad of court challenges, Trump maintained Friday that he has the authority to move forward with it.
“We have very, very strong legal standing,” Trump said, adding that he expected it could be stalled by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the court that previously ruled against his proposed travel ban.
“It’s a shame what they do,” Trump said. “So let’s see what happens.”
Trump’s proposal for a $5.7 billion for a wall along the border was at the heart of a 35-day-long partial government shutdown.
The president last Friday approved a stopgap measure to reopen the government for three weeks, but has maintained that he will either declare an emergency or let the government shut down again if he does not secure funding.
A bipartisan, bicameral set of lawmakers are holding border security negotiations in the interim, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has promised that the committee’s Democrats will not support a wall.
Trump has said he will not support the group’s proposal without wall funding, claiming it would represent a “waste of time.”
The committee is expected to meet through Feb. 15.